The Future of Washington Forests
The Future of Washington Forests Project is a comprehensive look at the future of forests in our state. Currently in progress, the study is examining the economic, recreational and environmental trends influencing the forest products industry and secondary manufacturing sectors in Washington State.
The study will provide information for decision makers at the state and local levels, and will support public forums and discussions that help shape forest policy.
DNR and the University of Washington
As directed by the 2005 Legislature, see ESSB 6090 section 308, sub-section 11, the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has contracted with the University of Washington (UW) College of Forest Resources (CFR) to conduct the study and prepare the report. The Legislature appropriated $1 million for the project. (Click here to view the progress report - July 2006)
Preliminary results and recommendations are expected to be available by the 2007 legislative session, and the final report is to be completed by the end of FY 2007 (June 30, 2007).
DNR plans to assemble a discussion forum linking study investigators and technical experts with a broad range of stakeholders, to consider the study findings and potential policy recommendations.
DNR will also prepare a final overview report to the legislature, summarizing study results and stakeholder discussions, and containing policy recommendations.
5 Key Subjects Plus Recommendations
The UW CFR researchers will:
- Update the 1992 timber supply study for Washington State.
- Assess the economic contribution of the forest products industry and secondary manufacturing to the state’s economy.
- Compare the competitive position of the forest products industry in the state with respect to other U.S. regions.
- Assess the trends and dynamics that commercial and residential development play in conversion of the state’s forests to non-forestry uses. (The Cascade Land Conservancy, as a subcontract partner with the College, will prepare findings on Cascade foothills land use issues.)
- Assess the expected rate of return from state-owned forest trust lands. (UW CFR will consult with the UW Economics Department on this subject.)
The UW CFR report will also include:
- Policy recommendations to enhance the state’s competitive position in the forestry and forest products industries, and to ensure that a productive forest land base continues to be managed for forest products and amenities, including recreational opportunities, on the state’s working forests.
- Specific recommendations to assist Cascade foothills landowners in keeping working forests intact while accommodating new uses to strengthen the economic and natural benefits from these lands.
If you want to read the Report
You can access each section of "The Future of Washington Forests 2007 Report to the Legislature" in the File area at the right.
The Future of Washington Forests Project Second Progress Report - July 2006
The Future of Washington Forests Project Third Progress Report - October 2006
The October Roundtable Streaming Video - October 30-31, 2006
The Future of Washington Forests Project Fourth Progress Report - November 2006